I mentioned earlier in Mountainside Escape in Engelberg that I had to travel to the nearby city of Lucerne to climb up the Swiss Alps. As the city was flanked by the crystalline Lake Lucerne and the lush Swiss Alps, its beauty paralleled that of Engelberg. Just as peaceful and beautiful, but no longer a small-town! Considering how I had one morning to wander around Lucerne, I’d say I did a pretty decent job of soaking it all in.
Visited the Lion Monument (Löwendenkmal)
Uhhh in my mind, I thought the Lion Monument would look like an Asian lion statue (LOL). Instead, the monument was carved into the side of a huge hunk of stone. It commemorates the Swiss Guards who were massacred in 1792 during the French Revolution.
Shopped Along Hertensteinstrasse
There are ample shopping opportunities in this town! In fact, I started to shop because of lack of things to do…heh. I randomly started on Hertensteinstrasse and walked all the way down that street. Don’t forget to pick up a couple of Swiss knives and chocolate!
Hung Around the Reuss River
I emerged from the shopping streets to this delightful view:
I stuck around the Reuss River for a while, people-watching and snacking on a sandwich.
And then I made my way along the river towards Chapel Bridge.
I even walked through a farmer’s market set up right by the river. I took a look at the prices and gave up reaaal quick. A small basket of strawberries cost 5 francs! But I was happy enough just browsing…
Walked Across Kapellbrücke (Chapel Bridge)
Kapellbrücke is definitely the most recognized symbol of Lucerne, and a main tourist attraction in all Switzerland. It is a medieval bridge dating back to the 17th century that was almost burned down in a 1993 fire that destroyed most of its interior paintings. Now it is the oldest wooden covered bridge in Europe, as well as the world’s oldest surviving truss bridge.
Boated Across Lake Lucerne
I showed a bit of this in Journey Up the Swiss Alps blog post, but boy, I had many more pictures in store. Scene after scene of the most beautiful landscapes that I’ve ever seen:
The water was just SO BLUE. I don’t think I’ve ever seen lake water this pure. What’s their secret to keeping it so clean?! The rest of the world could seriously learn a thing or two from the Swiss.
At the end of this trip, I came away knowing that Switzerland was my favorite country. The pristine environment, friendly people, and simpler way of life totally did it for me. Of course there’s a catch – the high cost of living! On my last night there, I spent 18 francs for a plate of pad thai. That’s like $18+ for what’s supposed to be cheap Thai food! So yeah, until I can drop that kind of paper three meals a day, I’ll be longing for my return to Switzerland…
Have you been to Switzerland? Where did you go?
P.S. Up next: read Journey Up the Swiss Alps (written in real-time during the trip)!